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Appeal for Responsible Drinking Over the Festive Period

23 December 2011

‘Drink irresponsibly during the festive period and you might end up with more than just a hangover.’ That’s the message from Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust in the run up to Christmas and New Year, traditionally their busiest time of year. 

Alcohol is one of the leading causes of accidents in the UK and this problem can become exacerbated during the festive season when the enjoyment of an alcoholic drink tends to play a part in many celebrations. 

With more people out and about to mark the festive season with colleagues, friends and family, the ambulance service is urging people to think about the consequences of drinking to excess and to drink sensibly to keep themselves, and others, free from harm.

Dr David Macklin, theTrust’s Associate Medical Director, said: “The high volume of calls we receive around Christmas and on New Year’s Eve puts the service under increased pressure and makes it harder for us to ensure we can get to all of our patients quickly.

“Our emergency resources can be a lifeline in a genuine life-threatening emergency such as a heart attack but our staff are too often caught up dealing with people with excessive drunkenness and alcohol-fuelled injuries which could have been avoided.

“We’re not saying people shouldn’t enjoy an alcoholic drink while celebrating, but ask that they do so sensibly to avoid the need for an ambulance so that they are left for those with a genuine need.” 

Over Christmas and on New Year’s Eve the ambulance service is running various initiatives across the county to ensure people with alcohol-related illnesses and injuries don’t place too much pressure on the service and on emergency departments in Yorkshire. This includes the use of police and paramedic teams schemes in busy town and city centres across the region.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service is also reminding people who require treatment or advice for a minor condition to consider the variety of other healthcare services available to them and only to call 999 when someone is in need of time-critical help. 

Produced By: Corporate Communications Department